Supplier competitive advantage in inter-firm business relationships: is Keiretsu really a source of competitive advantage for Japanese automotive suppliers?

Takaya Kato, Breno Nunes

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference publication

Abstract

This paper explores how firms create and sustain competitive advantage in the inter-firm business relationships from a supplier’s perspective. Ultimately, this paper draws its attention to keiretsu partnerships and how it is perceived by Japanese automotive suppliers. Four main theoretical perspectives (resource based view, industrial organisation, transaction cost economics, and relational network) were considered when developing a conceptual framework based on competitive capability, market diversification, and level of engagement. The framework was examined against two best-practice automotive component suppliers. Later, primary data was also gathered through an interview with a CEO and a survey questionnaire with 11 Japanese companies. As a result, this paper classified these 11 companies into four supplier groups based on tier level (1 and 2) and affiliation condition. Findings propose that there may be little benefit in being an affiliated tier 1 supplier, and that independent tier 2 suppliers may be more competitive than affiliated ones.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationAdvances in manufacturing technology XXVI : tenth international conference on manufacturing research
Subtitle of host publicationincorporating the 27th national conference on manufacturing research : manufacturing technology and operations to sustain business success
EditorsT.S. Baines, B.T. Clegg, D.K. Harrison
PublisherAston University
Volume2
ISBN (Print)978-1-90586660-1
Publication statusPublished - 2012
Event10th International Conference on Manufacturing Research - Aston University, Birmingham, United Kingdom
Duration: 10 Sep 201213 Sep 2012

Conference

Conference10th International Conference on Manufacturing Research
Abbreviated titleICMR 2012
CountryUnited Kingdom
CityBirmingham
Period10/09/1213/09/12
OtherIncorporating the 27 th National Conference on Manufacturing Research

Bibliographical note

© Aston Business School

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